2. Jonathan Abarbanel has a through look at opera in Chicago today. Even if you hate opera and gosh darn you just don’t know what they’re saying/singing, this is an interesting read. He mentions The Rose of Shambul, which he says “has a typical romantic story in the Viennese tradition of ‘kaffee mit schlag,’ but Chicago Folks Operetta is betting that excellent musical values and a colorful production will win converts.” But not everyone is a convert: “I’d recommend The Rose of Stambul to operetta lovers looking for something off the beaten path,” says Albert Williams at the Reader. “But if CFO wants to be taken seriously, it’ll have to bring its theatrical values up to snuff.”
3. West Side Story is here, intern Lauren saw it last night and said she’d rate it pretty high, but Chris Jones wants to remind us that, “The composer, Leonard Bernstein, is dead.” Yes…he is.
4. Theater Wit has announced their 2011-12 season. Though it’s not actually so much 2011, seeing as their first production doesn’t go up until January’s The North Plan. Of course, they’ll be hosting resident productions from Bohemian Theater ensemble and Stage Left Theater, which will be presenting their whole seasons at Theater Wit’s relatively new building, as well as as well as plently of rental productions, from BONEdance, Griffin, New Millenium, and several others.5. Jersey Shore fever is sweeping the nation; the University of Chicago is having a conference on it, and now it’s being put to music. Jersey Shore: The Musical is being produced by 4 Days Late, and is at Studio BE this summer. It’s also a parody of the show, if that makes you feel any better about your urge to see it. Star and head writer Erin Lane told the Sun-Times that “We basically turned [Snooki and Vinny] into our young lovers…Challenged by their celebrity and fame at the end of Act 1, the show gets canceled and they have to deal with real life.” Sounds just as riveting as the real thing.